Apple Patents TV That Shows 8 Videos At Once But The Viewer Sees Just One

A future Apple television might use Face ID to screen videos and show age-appropriate content to kids while adults see uncut scenes and 3D content.

Apple recently patented a TV that can show eight full-screen videos simultaneously while the viewer sees only one. The purpose is to isolate what each person can view for a variety of reasons. Thus far, Apple has not made a TV, and this patent might refer to a monitor or some other type of display. Apple TV is, of course, a streaming video box, and Apple TV-Plus is its subscription service for video content, so it makes sense for Apple to expand into televisions.

Apple has a strong interest in display technology and is continually exploring new ways to increase the value of its products with brighter screens that show vivid yet accurate colors. The 2021 MacBook Pro received a significant upgrade over the 2020 model, with not only faster M1 Pro and M1 Max processors but also due to a much-improved display. The mini-LED backlighting allows a one-million-to-one contrast ratio with sustained brightness of 1,000 nits and a peak brightness of 1,600 nits. This performance compares well to Apple’s $5,000 Pro Display XDR.


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Apple has plenty of experience with making computer displays. However, a recent patent published by the USPTO suggests it might venture further, potentially developing a large screen television with some surprising new capabilities. The document describes a display that uses an advanced lenticular design to split an image into as many as eight different views, allowing multiple viewers to see different content simultaneously. This could be used to show censored content to younger viewers while the unedited movie would be shown to adults, an advanced form of the parental controls of its Apple TV video-streaming box.

Apple’s User-Aware TV

The Afterparty Apple TV+ Featured

In order to show multiple videos on one TV at the same time, the picture must be split up, which isn’t unusual unless each video uses the entire screen. Apple’s patent describes a way to do this by using a lenticular design. A simple form of this technology has been used in postcards and signs for decades. A laminated sheet with ridges makes a portion of the image visible at one angle, and another part of the picture is seen when turning the card or walking past a sign to view from a new angle. Apple’s patent doesn’t delve too far into the details of its advanced lenticular structure, focusing more on identifying users in order to deliver content as a person moves around a room.

The computer-controlled display would alter content to show a different video to several people using cameras and facial recognition. In fact, Apple describes showing different content to each eye, like a VR headset does, allowing three-dimensional content to be displayed without the need for special glasses. The concept is just as advanced as the technology that would be required to build it. While it might be several years before it would even be possible to make such a display and develop the software and hardware to support such a demanding system, an Apple television that delivers different videos to each viewer might be revealed someday.

Next: Wild New Apple Patent Describes Display That Only YOU Can See

Source: USPTO

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